FAQ
I can definitely appreciate the benefits of dynamic parameters, and of being able to persist the values of those parameters accross shutdown/startup cycles. But I would have guessed that oracle could have gotten both of those features together without going to a binary parameter file--couldn't whatever process writes to the spfile just write to a plain text file instead? Does anybody know what the advantage of having a binary store of params is?

Cheers,

-Roy

Roy Pardee
Programmer/Analyst/DBA
SWFPAC Lockheed Martin IT
Extension 8487

-----Original Message-----
From: Arup Nanda
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 3:00 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
Subject: Re: How to make SPFILE in sync with INIT.ORA ?

This can be solved by creating the PFILE again from the SPFILE; and this
doesn't need the instance to be up. However, you did drive the nail home,
Niall, with this example.

Part of the problem could be avoided by restricting the ALTER SYSTEM, SYSDBA
or SYSOPER privileges; but in a large shop with a lot of production support
DBAS....!!

Arup Nanda

Original Message -----
To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 4:59 PM
Not only that but this sort of thing should be avoidable.

SQL> alter system set db_cache_size=10m scope=both;

System altered.



SQL> alter system set db_block_buffers=1000 scope=spfile;

System altered.

SQL> shutdown;
Database closed.
Database dismounted.
ORACLE instance shut down.
SQL> startup
ORA-00381: cannot use both new and old parameters for buffer cache size
specific
ation
SQL>

What do you do if you didn't have an old fashioned text file? I'd also
like to know how spfile changes get documented, it scares me enough that
someone can change parameters on the fly, let alone that that can be
done without comment or recording who did it. I'll admit thugh that this
last is actually a failure of management and not technology.

Niall
-----Original Message-----
From: ml-errors_at_fatcity.com On
Behalf Of Arup Nanda
Sent: 16 July 2003 06:09
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
Subject: Re: How to make SPFILE in sync with INIT.ORA ?


Dennis,
My understanding is that Oracle felt if it was going to be a
24x7x365 database, it had to have more parameters that could be
changed online
I couldn't agree more. 9i had more parameters that can be
changed online; hope there are more in line.
it doesn't make sense to rely on the DBA
to remember to also update the init.ora file. You should be able to
just make the change once.
Absolutely. That's the point I was trying to raise. Oracle
did provide the spfile route to make _persistent_ changes on
the fly, but for only those parameters that can be changed
through alter system set ... The problem was there is a
different file that needs to be updated when making those
other parameter changes. There should be only one place to
change - hopefully spfile - either through the alter system
command or othe editing. This editing could be done through a
GUI interface, too, if needed; although, call me
old-fashioned (and I am old, anyway, at least in IT
timeline), personally I prefer the vi editor. And this is not
an impossible idea. I gave the example of the listener.ora
file. It can be edited (so old fashioned), through the
lsntctl SAVE_CONFIG command (so spfile-like) or through Net
Assistant (so GUI-friendly). The end result is the same - one
file - regardless of how you modify a parameter. The same
approach could have been done in pfile-spfile case.
I think with the pfile and spfile, Oracle was trying to
give us the
best of both worlds.
Hmm! You think so? I think they just gave us a half-cooked
hair-brained split-pea honey-mustard-ketchup-coated germ of a
solution - sort of like Oracle 6 _without_ the Transaction
Processing Option, if anyone remembers that. After you wipe
off all those condiments, you find a Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
parameter file(s)!

Regards,

Arup


----- Original Message -----
To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 12:24 AM

Arup
My understanding is that Oracle felt if it was going to be a
24x7x365 database, it had to have more parameters that could be
changed online. Some
parameters were made changeable in Oracle9i, with hints of
more to come.
If the future is online changes, it doesn't make sense
to rely on
the DBA
to remember to also update the init.ora file. You should be able to
just make the change once.
Also, there is a new generation of I.S. people coming along that doesn't
think you can operate a computer without a mouse. Against
Microsoft's
super
GUI interfaces, the idea of manually editing a text
configuration file
seems
very last century.
I think with the pfile and spfile, Oracle was trying to
give us the
best
of both worlds. How well they succeeded is a matter of judgement.

Dennis Williams
DBA
Lifetouch, Inc.
dwilliams_at_lifetouch.com

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 9:14 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


The ability to change the system parameters without bouncing the
system is not provided by spfile, neither in RAC nor single instance
databas. It depends upon the the parameter that can be changed
dynamically or not.

I guess you wanted to convey the impression that the using
spfiles the
parameters can be changed and the changes can be persistent across
shutdowns. But that is not just in RAC; it's true for
single instance
DBs, too.

Now, suppose you want to set a parameter that can't be
changed using
ALTER SYSTEM, such as, say, java_pool_size. How do you plan to make
the change? You have to open up the old favorite init.ora file and
start the database with pfile=init.ora option. At that stage the
spfile is not active and your
issuing Alter system set db_cache_size = 800m scope = [ memory |
spfile | both ] sid = * has no effect. You must create the
spfile from
the pfile and
then use the newly created spfile to use this "dynamic" parameter
persistent. Note the complexity involved - spfile allowed
you to make
the changes to some parmeters using alter system
persistent; but for
all other parametrs you are forced to use pfile. What
happens if you
ommit the pfile=init.ora clause? The database will pickup
the spfile,
which will _not_
have your changes.

To fully appreciate the value of the spfile parameter,
Oracle should
have allowed editing spfile directly and completely done away with
pfile. Splitting functionality across two different implementations
adds to difficulties, does not resolve them. I hope future
versions of
Oracle do offer that functionality. It's not that difficult
or unheard
of, either. Listener.ora, tnsnames.ora are all editable and also read
by Net
Assistant.
just my .02

Arup Nanda


----- Original Message -----
To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 8:09 PM

Spfile is shared and can be modified dynamically without bouncing
the instances.

Eg. Alter system set db_cache_size = 800m scope = [
memory | spfile
both ]
sid = *

Without spfile, you can still make this change dynamically in
memory,
but
you would have to manually update init.ora file to reflect your
change. Spfile allows you to automatically capture these dynamic
changes.

Gerardo

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 4:45 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


And how, exactly?

----- Original Message -----
To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 7:29 PM

You'll appreciate spfiles if you're using RAC.

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 2:09 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


And create pfile from spfile; does a similar job.

I'm rapidly beginning to think that spfiles are just
not worth it.
Now how to reverse the policy decision having mandated
them for 9i
installs :(

Niall
-----Original Message-----
From: ml-errors_at_fatcity.com On
Behalf Of Arup Nanda
Sent: 15 July 2003 04:44
To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
Subject: Re: How to make SPFILE in sync with INIT.ORA ?


As user sys, issue

CREATE SPFILE FROM PFILE;
This will create the spfile. You must have started
the database
using the pfile to use this command.

HTH.
Arup Nanda
----- Original Message -----
To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"

Sent: Monday, July 14, 2003 10:59 PM

Guys,

i have a 9iR2/win2k test instance.
i just renamed CONTROL01.CTL once and tried to start the
instance.

SQL>startup
But it gave a ORA-00205 error.

so i removed CONTROL01.CTL from INIT.ORA file and
started the
instance
SQL>startup pfile='d:\oracle\admin\pe92\pfile\init.ora'
Now it worked fine.

BUT:
SQL>startup
This is not possible because the SPFILE still has
CONTROL01.CTL in it.
How do i make my SPFILE in sync with the INIT.ORA ?

Regards,
Jp.



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Search Discussions

  • Turner, Adrian A SITI-ITPSIE at Jul 17, 2003 at 6:43 am
    Roy,

    I imagine its so that it can only be changed by someone who is validated against the database with the correct permissions.

    Kind Regards,
    Adrian

    -----Original Message-----
    From: Pardee, Roy E
    Sent: 16 July 2003 23:40
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
    Subject: Why are SPFILEs binary anyway? (was RE: How to make SPFILE in
    sync with INIT.ORA ?)

    I can definitely appreciate the benefits of dynamic parameters, and of being able to persist the values of those parameters accross shutdown/startup cycles. But I would have guessed that oracle could have gotten both of those features together without going to a binary parameter file--couldn't whatever process writes to the spfile just write to a plain text file instead? Does anybody know what the advantage of having a binary store of params is?

    Cheers,

    -Roy

    Roy Pardee
    Programmer/Analyst/DBA
    SWFPAC Lockheed Martin IT
    Extension 8487

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 3:00 PM
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L

    This can be solved by creating the PFILE again from the SPFILE; and this
    doesn't need the instance to be up. However, you did drive the nail home,
    Niall, with this example.

    Part of the problem could be avoided by restricting the ALTER SYSTEM, SYSDBA
    or SYSOPER privileges; but in a large shop with a lot of production support
    DBAS....!!

    Arup Nanda

    Original Message -----
    To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
    Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 4:59 PM
    Not only that but this sort of thing should be avoidable.

    SQL> alter system set db_cache_size=10m scope=both;

    System altered.



    SQL> alter system set db_block_buffers=1000 scope=spfile;

    System altered.

    SQL> shutdown;
    Database closed.
    Database dismounted.
    ORACLE instance shut down.
    SQL> startup
    ORA-00381: cannot use both new and old parameters for buffer cache size
    specific
    ation
    SQL>

    What do you do if you didn't have an old fashioned text file? I'd also
    like to know how spfile changes get documented, it scares me enough that
    someone can change parameters on the fly, let alone that that can be
    done without comment or recording who did it. I'll admit thugh that this
    last is actually a failure of management and not technology.

    Niall
    -----Original Message-----
    From: ml-errors_at_fatcity.com On
    Behalf Of Arup Nanda
    Sent: 16 July 2003 06:09
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
    Subject: Re: How to make SPFILE in sync with INIT.ORA ?


    Dennis,
    My understanding is that Oracle felt if it was going to be a
    24x7x365 database, it had to have more parameters that could be
    changed online
    I couldn't agree more. 9i had more parameters that can be
    changed online; hope there are more in line.
    it doesn't make sense to rely on the DBA
    to remember to also update the init.ora file. You should be able to
    just make the change once.
    Absolutely. That's the point I was trying to raise. Oracle
    did provide the spfile route to make _persistent_ changes on
    the fly, but for only those parameters that can be changed
    through alter system set ... The problem was there is a
    different file that needs to be updated when making those
    other parameter changes. There should be only one place to
    change - hopefully spfile - either through the alter system
    command or othe editing. This editing could be done through a
    GUI interface, too, if needed; although, call me
    old-fashioned (and I am old, anyway, at least in IT
    timeline), personally I prefer the vi editor. And this is not
    an impossible idea. I gave the example of the listener.ora
    file. It can be edited (so old fashioned), through the
    lsntctl SAVE_CONFIG command (so spfile-like) or through Net
    Assistant (so GUI-friendly). The end result is the same - one
    file - regardless of how you modify a parameter. The same
    approach could have been done in pfile-spfile case.
    I think with the pfile and spfile, Oracle was trying to
    give us the
    best of both worlds.
    Hmm! You think so? I think they just gave us a half-cooked
    hair-brained split-pea honey-mustard-ketchup-coated germ of a
    solution - sort of like Oracle 6 _without_ the Transaction
    Processing Option, if anyone remembers that. After you wipe
    off all those condiments, you find a Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
    parameter file(s)!

    Regards,

    Arup


    ----- Original Message -----
    To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
    Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2003 12:24 AM

    Arup
    My understanding is that Oracle felt if it was going to be a
    24x7x365 database, it had to have more parameters that could be
    changed online. Some
    parameters were made changeable in Oracle9i, with hints of
    more to come.
    If the future is online changes, it doesn't make sense
    to rely on
    the DBA
    to remember to also update the init.ora file. You should be able to
    just make the change once.
    Also, there is a new generation of I.S. people coming along that doesn't
    think you can operate a computer without a mouse. Against
    Microsoft's
    super
    GUI interfaces, the idea of manually editing a text
    configuration file
    seems
    very last century.
    I think with the pfile and spfile, Oracle was trying to
    give us the
    best
    of both worlds. How well they succeeded is a matter of judgement.

    Dennis Williams
    DBA
    Lifetouch, Inc.
    dwilliams_at_lifetouch.com

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 9:14 PM
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


    The ability to change the system parameters without bouncing the
    system is not provided by spfile, neither in RAC nor single instance
    databas. It depends upon the the parameter that can be changed
    dynamically or not.

    I guess you wanted to convey the impression that the using
    spfiles the
    parameters can be changed and the changes can be persistent across
    shutdowns. But that is not just in RAC; it's true for
    single instance
    DBs, too.

    Now, suppose you want to set a parameter that can't be
    changed using
    ALTER SYSTEM, such as, say, java_pool_size. How do you plan to make
    the change? You have to open up the old favorite init.ora file and
    start the database with pfile=init.ora option. At that stage the
    spfile is not active and your
    issuing Alter system set db_cache_size = 800m scope = [ memory |
    spfile | both ] sid = * has no effect. You must create the
    spfile from
    the pfile and
    then use the newly created spfile to use this "dynamic" parameter
    persistent. Note the complexity involved - spfile allowed
    you to make
    the changes to some parmeters using alter system
    persistent; but for
    all other parametrs you are forced to use pfile. What
    happens if you
    ommit the pfile=init.ora clause? The database will pickup
    the spfile,
    which will _not_
    have your changes.

    To fully appreciate the value of the spfile parameter,
    Oracle should
    have allowed editing spfile directly and completely done away with
    pfile. Splitting functionality across two different implementations
    adds to difficulties, does not resolve them. I hope future
    versions of
    Oracle do offer that functionality. It's not that difficult
    or unheard
    of, either. Listener.ora, tnsnames.ora are all editable and also read
    by Net
    Assistant.
    just my .02

    Arup Nanda


    ----- Original Message -----
    To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
    Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 8:09 PM

    Spfile is shared and can be modified dynamically without bouncing
    the instances.

    Eg. Alter system set db_cache_size = 800m scope = [
    memory | spfile
    both ]
    sid = *

    Without spfile, you can still make this change dynamically in
    memory,
    but
    you would have to manually update init.ora file to reflect your
    change. Spfile allows you to automatically capture these dynamic
    changes.

    Gerardo

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 4:45 PM
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


    And how, exactly?

    ----- Original Message -----
    To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"
    Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 7:29 PM

    You'll appreciate spfiles if you're using RAC.

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 2:09 PM
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L


    And create pfile from spfile; does a similar job.

    I'm rapidly beginning to think that spfiles are just
    not worth it.
    Now how to reverse the policy decision having mandated
    them for 9i
    installs :(

    Niall
    -----Original Message-----
    From: ml-errors_at_fatcity.com On
    Behalf Of Arup Nanda
    Sent: 15 July 2003 04:44
    To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
    Subject: Re: How to make SPFILE in sync with INIT.ORA ?


    As user sys, issue

    CREATE SPFILE FROM PFILE;
    This will create the spfile. You must have started
    the database
    using the pfile to use this command.

    HTH.
    Arup Nanda
    ----- Original Message -----
    To: "Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L"

    Sent: Monday, July 14, 2003 10:59 PM

    Guys,

    i have a 9iR2/win2k test instance.
    i just renamed CONTROL01.CTL once and tried to start the
    instance.

    SQL>startup
    But it gave a ORA-00205 error.

    so i removed CONTROL01.CTL from INIT.ORA file and
    started the
    instance
    SQL>startup pfile='d:\oracle\admin\pe92\pfile\init.ora'
    Now it worked fine.

    BUT:
    SQL>startup
    This is not possible because the SPFILE still has
    CONTROL01.CTL in it.
    How do i make my SPFILE in sync with the INIT.ORA ?

    Regards,
    Jp.



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postedJul 16, '03 at 9:33p
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